Theoretical Physics

The Theoretical Physics subprogram provides the vision and mathematical framework for understanding and extending the knowledge of particles, forces, space-time, and the universe.  This program supports activities that range from detailed calculations of the predictions of the Standard Model to the extrapolation of current knowledge to a new level of understanding and the identification of the means to experimentally search for them.  Symmetries play a major role in the current understanding of the subatomic world: discovering how particle symmetries are realized (or broken) in nature has provided many fundamental breakthroughs in the development of the Standard Model.  This subprogram supports and advanced research at all three high energy physics Frontiers.  In the laboratory, theoretical physicists work very closely with experimentalists. Working on many aspects of the mathematical framework of particle physics, theorists often guide the choice and direction of experimental topics at accelerators like the Tevatron and the Large Hadron Collider. Experimental results, in turn, provide new information about how the world works and stimulate the development of new and improved theoretical ideas.